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Daily Practice of Joy


by Victoria Price

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Daily Practice of Joy


by Victoria Price

My name is Victoria Price. . . and I am a workaholic.

But I used to be this little joyful girl.

Where did she go?

I go around the world talking about my dad  a man, Ive come to realize, who knew how to give and get joy, who lived it and shared it with everyone he met.

I go around the world telling people what I need to know.

My dad practiced joy every day, but the more Ive talked about my dads joy  its importance in his life and its necessity in my own, the more abstract it has seemed. 

I thought to myself — I try to practice conscious eating, I get my 10,000 steps a day, I am even trying to get a good night’s sleep. My morning spiritual practice has sustained me for years. But all of it has started to feel dutiful. 

Sometimes, I find myself wondering — why? 

This weekly blog is my answer to the why. You see, I believe I will find my answer by making a commitment to what I have come to call my Daily Practice of Joy. 

Practice is the actual application or use of an idea, belief, or method as opposed to theories about such application or use.

But what is joy?

This is the definition I like best: “Joy is the pure and simple delight in being alive."

A few of my closest friends have asked me — oh so helpfully — “You’re going to write about practicing joy? Shouldn’t you wait to see if it works?"

I love what Parker Palmer says about writing: , "In this society, people who write passable books — and even books that aren’t — tend to get pegged as experts on their subjects. . .I’ve never written a book on something I’ve mastered. . .I write about things that feel to me like bottomless mysteries — and I start writing from a place of beginner’s mind. For me, writing . . .begins with making a deep dive into something that baffles me — into my not-knowing — and dwelling in the dark long enough that 'the eye begins to see' what’s down there. . .Novices are often advised to 'write about what you know’. I wouldn’t call that bad advice, but I think it needs tweaking. Write about what you want to know because it intrigues and baffles you."

So, that’s why I’m writing this blog every week — to help me untangle the mess of my life that is strangling my joy. To show up every day with the intention of practicing joy — and being accountable to you to share my progress.

For those of you who recognize yourself in my words, I hope this blog may help you, too, to remember your joy — to remember that child in you, who could laugh with abandon and revel in silliness, who knew that puddles are for splashing in and that flowers always always make us smile. . . But as Henri Nouwen so wisely wrote, "Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy, and keep choosing it every day."

Let’s keep remembering and reminding one another to choose joy — and practice it every day, until that laughing child in each of us is no longer a distant memory!

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